BWW Review: Diamond-Cut Vocals Make For A Hysterically Cutting-Edged SCISSORHANDS - A MUSICAL
SCISSORHANDS - A MUSICAL/written & directed by Bradley Bredeweg/musical direction by Gregory Nabours/Rockwell Table & Stage/thru January 5, 2020
The Fuse Project and Rockwell Table & Stage most successfully reprises their hit holiday show of last year - SCISSORHANDS - A MUSICAL. With most of the very talented cast returning from last year's production, SCISSORHANDS hits all the high, as well as, all the hilarious notes with astounding vocals and fine-tuned comic timing from the entire eight-person ensemble. Bradley Bredeweg directs his most cleverly adapted homage of the 1990 hit film Edward Scissorhands.
No need to have seen the film to get all the laughs and tears of SCISSORHANDS - A MUSICAL. Peg, your local Avon representative, decides to expand her sales territory and venture up the hill to a lone house where she finds a young, androgynous creature with scissors for appendages. Peg takes the orphaned youth home with her to stay in her daughter Kim's room while Kim's away on a trip with her boyfriend Jim. Peg's friends and nosy neighbors Joyce, Helen and Esmerelda befriend Scissorhands as they discover Scissorhands' knack for cutting hair and their bushes. In an ingenious theatrical device, hooded performers wave paper fans dispersing white confetti to simulate falling snow, and then green confetti to replicate cut shrubbery flying. Thrown hair pieces cleverly suggest sheered long hair.
This vocally gifted cast all receive their individual moments to shine. While in SaraAnne Fahey's creative choreographed numbers (ABBA's "Money, Money, Money;" Scissor Sisters' "Let's Have a Kiki;" David Bowie/Nine Inch Nails' "I'm Afraid of Americans, and the finale Florence & the Machine's "Shake It Out" ) they collectively sparkle.
Dionne Gipson sings the hell out of her character, The Inventor/Mother of Scissorhands, in Aerosmith's "Dream On," Tori Amos' "Star of Wonder," Gary Jules' "Mad World," and especially in the second act opener Stevie Wonder's "Higher Ground."
As I've said before in shows I've seen with Emma Hunton, she can do just about anything - sing, comically quip, tackle serious drama; and she sure does here. As the big-hearted Peg, the big-voiced Hunton finally gets her stunning solo turn late in the second act in Nirvana's "All Apologies." Yeahhh!!!
Jordan Kai Burnett as the titular Scissorhands shows off her vocal chops in American Authors' "Best Day of My Life," duetting with Hunton in Sia's "Breathe Me," and with Masini in a tender Beatles' "I Want To Hold Your Hand."
Daisy Eagan as Esmeralda, Ryan O'Connor as Helen and Carly Casey as Joyce provide much hilarity and vocal harmony as the nosy neighbors, with Eagan really owning her bump-and-grind version of Madonna's "Like a Prayer," and Casey simply pure seduction in Lady Gaga's "The Edge of Glory."
Musical director Gregory Nabours (on piano) sharply leads, as always, his melodious band (Liam Kevany on guitar, Blake Estrada on bass and Brian Cannady on drums) providing first-rate, innovative back-up musicality to the vocally-gifted cast.
SCISSORHANDS - A MUSICAL - a definite cut above your standard fare.